Here I will list all to me known progressive music items from the Basque area, which is still laying in Spain, but which has its own culture, with its own origins and styles. Beside punk as protest music (with a goal for independency) and very traditional music, pop, there are also some very interesting progressive items, in style somewhat related to each other. This style mostly has folk influences and in its progression is very moody without being pop / rock / jazz / free or (within) any defined category. It's very atmospheric, intimate music. The listed items get here mostly only a very small review just enough for being able place them.
GENERAL MUSIC LINKS :
It's the cheepest mail order, but you have to count 14,50 euro's for delivery !
This label has been distributed by the Spanish Lost Vinyl.
SPECIFIC GROUPS :
They made two interesting progressive items : "Enbor" (1979) and "Katebegiak" (1980).
Especially the piano / female vocals works great.
Errobi's "Ametsarren Bidea" from 1980 is a good product with outstanding long track.
"Bizi-Bizian" from 1979 is OK, but not as good.
"Founded by Anje Duhalde and Mixel Ducau in 1973, Errobi was the first Basque rock band. To their blend of symphonic rock and jazz, popular at the time, they added a nationalistic touch and the language of the proletariat. The band had great success and some of thier songs, like 'Gure Lekukotasuna', 'Xilego Langileria' and 'Telebista' became classics. Having disbanded in 1979 they reformed for a short period in 1985. Both Duhalde and Ducau have since pursued solo careers. " -Elkar Web Site description-
I ordered the first album now. Their style was not yet as developed as in the albums after that. It's especially that third album which is defintely worth to trace.
Both albums are very interesting."Hontz Gaua" is a classic prog free folk item with some Gregorian element, nice female/(second male) vocals and beautiful atmospheric double bass. "Haizea"(1980) is a bit more intimate.
Altough they have many albums only "Ezekiel" stands out as a classic. Itoiz is quite good. Alkolea is good too. Then they change into more commercial drumming, and a more pop oriented rock sound.
"The touchstone of pop music in Basque, even after so many years, is still Itoiz. Formed in 1974 when there was as yet no Basque rock culture, from the first they fascinated fans and critics. Their early albums, now considered classics, took huge risks for a Basque band, merging symphonic rock with traditional Basque music, and the experience of peaceful life on the coast with existential lyrics. From their fourth album on Itoiz were largely a pop band, creating straight catchy melodies. With these later albums they became one of the most successful Basque groups in the eighties. " Elkar Website description
Their only item is very intimite. Nice. Simularities with Haizea's atmosphere and the Dutch band Nightwatch. If you like Emtidi try Itziar and Haizea.
More traditional folk-orientated, but well crafted and original, atmospheric. First "Izukaitz" is a bit like second Haizea. "Otsoa Dantzan" is most folk in style..
About "Izukaitz" : "What a wonderful album this is!!! The first album by Basque folk group Izukaitz, originally released on the Xoxoa label in 1978. Strongly into traditional Basque folk but adding some rock elements to it; they use traditional instruments like Txirula or Alboka, but some psychedelic backwards guitar too. Beautiful male/female vocals also, entirely sung in Basque language. This group will sure remind you on the best moments of British folk legends like Fairport Convention or Steeleye Span." Guerssen
About the upcomming LP reissue : "Continuing our promised vinyl reissues of Basque progressive, folk & psychedelic titles, we're now proud to present you the vinyl reissue of one of the pearls of the Basque scene. The sole album by Lisker is definitely one of the most sought-after albums from Europe. It was originally released in 1979 on the Xoxoa label. Musically it is hard-progressive rock, with excellent flute work reminding on Jethro Tull, lots of fuzz guitars, some acoustic guitar and excellent drumming." Guerssen
A progressive rock album
TXOMIN ARTOLA :
About "Belar hostoak" : "Txomin Artola was founder of Haizea is the mid 70's. After their first album, he left the group and started his solo career, we're now bringing you his debut album.
This still unknown Basque folk-prog album was originally released by Xoxoa in 1978, and musically it is in the same vein of Haizea, a really beautiful album full of folk ambients with some slight progressive moves, using acoustic and electric guitars, xylophone, flute, piano and drumming in some tracks."Guerssen
Will be out on LP soon.
A really good prog rock band, with good electric guitars,...
"Following our journey for northern lands, we can make allusion to the progressive one basque, influenced by the popular music, the folk, instrumentation of acoustic tendency and prevalence of feminine voices in many of the cases, but in their more progressive, more symphonic aspect enjoyed bands with great impact as Sakre that in 1978 they gave their called fruit "Bizitako Gauzak", a conceptual work and of defined symphonic pattern, where the keyboards and the guitars played a definitive paper. Other big formations like Embor, Koska or Ganbara, obtained their fair and deserved recognition, as well as they have been able to give to know more widely thanks to the reissue of their works discographics." Luis Arnaldo (from article)
I have ready but not edited a book with about 500 entries of artist/groups of spanish progressive, psychedelic, acid folk rock... with label, references, edition, year, reiusse on lp and cd with references and edition year, comments...but, I don´t have money yet for the edition.
Here's some information for your web page. Some groups from Pais Basque:
Akelarre Asfaltuko Lorea Xoxoa X-11.139 (1980)
Work with some progressive tracks and good electric guitars & synthesizers,male vocals. The best tracks -"Asfaltuko lorea", "Itzuli anaia", "Sartunaiz"... forgoten the B side.
Iñaki Eizmendi : Gureak Ez Diren Kale I Ixileen Bi Milagarren Kardantxa 171184/4 (1977)
Iñaki, not relation with Iñaki Egaña, good progressive tracks with mini-moog, mellotron, on "Odol zaharrak"; others tracks more songwritter with flauta, electric guitars like "Larra erdian", "Ene maitea nauzu", with
hammond y mellotron. On "Gernikari", effects wah-wah floatings, mellotron, mini-moog, the lp, have fold open cover. Another album of them, Karma is reviewed more properly :
Iñaki : Karma (Rca SPL-12097) (1974)
Legendary musician ex Los Buenos, Alacrán, Imán... Their only work, is a good mix of hard-rock, with progressive accents, hard and agressive vocals in spanish/english, with heavy guitars, organ, mellotrón... Open the album "Tale for Tom", with good organ, guitars, bass and vocal. "El maestro", is the better track from the album, very progressive. "Your rock your way", with good fuzz guitar is a more rock approach. "Tú mismo", have good monophonic synthesizer work, acoustic guitars, organ... "Hostal San Quintín", gospel vocal, text about loneliness. "Lack of relations", like Alacrán, with good fuzz guitar, agressive vocal in english, organ and monolythic rhythmical section. "How many times?", with slowly and solemn introduction of hammond, and "En un lugar", the last track in the album. The work, have a religious feeling. Great cover work. No reissue on cd.
lp: Koska IZ-102 (1976)
lp: Bihoskadak Xoxoa X-11.104 (1979)
Another pair of rare & difficult to find lp´s from Pays Basque. Koska -first album-, is a affair more opera folk rock, all tracks are a suite, with more acoustic feeling, with good male vocals. Bihozkadak, have long tracks. In the side A, "Ehun urte" with 10:06 min., and "Esnaera" with 7:09 min., where the music is more floating, with good fuuz guitar like Lisker or Magdalena. Side B, have 4 tracks more in Enbor, Errobi vein...
Zaldi Erratu Hatsa : Xoxoa X-11.142 (1980)
re en cd: Zaldi Erratu Hatsa : Colecc. Euskal Kantariak ZC-61 (1996)
Zaldi Erratu Hatsa -the second album-, is from Xoxoa label. Is more acoustic and added some traditional instruments, with tracks like "Zu zugan", with fender piano. "Herri definizioa", with flauta. "Harea", with
classic piano, vocal and violin arrengements. The most electric tracks are "Beltzak omen ziren", "Gauarengandik ihesean", with good electric guitars of Mixel Ducau -from Errobi-, and fender piano. The most extended track is "Lanbroa" -with 11:30 min.-
Brakaman Rca PL-35102 (1977)
re en cd:
Brakaman Bmg/Rca 74321779622 (2000)
The album have a good mix of rock, hard-rock, blues of 70´s, but with a progressive touch, vocal in spanish, with great wah wah guitars work, some like the first album of Burning. Great cover design.
Antonio Breschi Mezulari Elkar-101 (1985)
re en cd: Mezulari Colección "Zapiak bat" ZC-83 (1997)
Tierras, Mares y Memorias (re en cd) Rne 640001 (1990)
Las 4 músicas N-34001 (1986)
Antonio Breschi, irish musician, but issue some albums in Pais Basque. Mezulari, great keyboard album, celtic folk with progressives accents. Like "Gandalf towards celtic music. Added male and female vocals.
Macadán Fly Greyhead LP 001 (1998)
First edition of Greyhead label. a limited and numbered edition of 25 copy in wood book, double insert... private edition for collectors only. The normal edition, limited to 500 copy numbered, with all differents labels and hand painted. Fly, is great psychedelic music, with percussion, fuzz, wah-wah, vibrato guitars, effects, a mix of 1/3 first Mutantes, 1/3 Marcus, 1/3 Santana, and some psychedelic touch from Delerium label.
Magdalena Lanean Sartzen IZ 144-D (1981)
Is from Pamplona, with a formation of 6 musics. 3 electric guitars whitout keyboards, vocal, flute... pastoral progressive rock like Itoiz and Lisker albums, only more soft what Lisker.
single: Charles Bronson/Desodoroo? Munster 7107 (1996)
cd: Various Artist "Munsterama" Munster MR CD 118 (1997)
Group from Guetxo -Bilbao-, with a single, of which cover is poster format,with fantastic motifs, based on Tolkien work. The music in the last 60´s Psychedelic West Coast style. With influences of Jefferson Airplane, Love, Moby Grape...
Information about artist/groups from my no edited book "2001, y aún una Odisea en España"
SOME EXTRA LINKS TO GROUPS STILL UNKNOWN TO ME:
Possible other interesting groups are SAKRE, KOSKA, ZEN, MAGDALENA,
From which I don't know anything about.
31st of October 2001 Radio Program Playlist at next txt.file If you know of other interesting Bask items, please let me know. Please go back to the index page of my Radio Program "Psyche van het Folk"